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Stark Studio Rugs Premieres at the Rug Show New York with Big Plans for High Point

By Carol Tisch

John Stark and Steven Stark of Stark Carpet talk with about the new Stark Studio Rugs brand at The Rug Show New York.


NEW YORK - Stark Studio Rugs officially premiered at The Rug Show New York, Sept. 10-13, at theJacob Javits Center with a striking display showcasing its first 24 collections, a sneak peek at 2018 designs, and aggressive plans for growth at home and abroad. spoke with Stark principals, John and Steven Stark at the show, learning that since rebranding its Concept International label as Stark Studio Rugs (read full story), Stark has signed a lease for a permanent showroom in High Point.
"The target customer is high end retail stores all over the country that carry our Prestige line -- rug stores and furniture stores," said John Stark. "Concept was our original [rug] company; we've had it for many years, but we were carrying more of a lower end line. We rebranded the Concept line as Stark Studio Rugs and have gone into high-end Nepalese and high-end Indian rugs," he explained.

Stark Studio Rugs' new glossy catalog distributed to buyers attending The Rug Show New York features an upscale editorial look.

"We are going to have a permanent showroom in High Point - not this coming market, the next one [spring 2018]," John Stark continued. In addition, Stark Studio Rugs and Prestige broadloom will be carried in Stark's 20 company-owned and representative showrooms in major design centers in the U.S. and overseas.
"The response has been terrific," added Steven Stark.  "We are showing in Domotex for the first time because we have such a good European business. We are in London, and we are in Paris. We have a great business with interior designers in Europe."


Haynes Robinson of Stark Carpet and Amy Conlon of the company's Prestige Mills division at The Rug Show NY.


Also premiering at The Rug Show were marketing materials sporting a new logo for the rug group, including a glossy 150-page catalog with four color photography of each rug in the 24 collections interspersed with lifestyle room vignettes in lavish architectural settings.

A heavy focus on rugs sees seasoned rug talents now on board at Stark, with Haynes Robinson as VP Product Development at Stark Carpet & Fabric, and Amy Conlon, Creative Director for Prestige Mills. Robinson is known to the industry for his previous carpet import company Rugs by Robinson in Atlanta and work as creative director for Obeetee. Conlon had been design director for Couristan before joining Stark in June 2017.

Stark execs David Straus, Taylor van der Mandele and Peter Feldman at the Stark Studio Rugs booth at Sept. 2017, Rug Show New York.

Melanie Hayim, director of operations at Prestige, announced in April that Taylor van der Mandele, formerly the owner of specialty rug importer, AMS Imports, had joined Stark Studio Rugs as its new national sales manager.  "We at Stark Studio Rugs are very excited to showcase our new brand at The Rug Show," van der Mandele told Our clients will be looking for textures and color, both of which are key components of our broad, high-end product offering.

Housed under Stark's Prestige Mills division, which features an expansive broadloom program for retail and designer showrooms, Stark Studio Rugs are elegant transitional designs, ranging from understated geometrics and stripes to batik-like looks.

Following is a sampling from the collection, which is hand knotted in India or Nepal in a range of materials ranging from pure wool, silk, viscose to blends such as wool and bamboo silk. 



Shrewsbury Collection


A detail of  the Oswald rug in Graphite from the Stark Studio Rug Shrewsbury collection.



Durable and textured, the Shrewsbury Collection from Nepal is richly hand knotted with wool and silk. The carefully crafted designs offer a tribal spin on a sophisticated look. Available in 8x10, 9x12, 12x15 and custom sizes.


We have some very big news for this show. We have recently rebranded as Stark Studio Rugs, so we'll be exhibiting under our new company name and brand.



"We at Stark Studio Rugs are very excited to showcase our new brand at The Rug Show. Clients will be looking for textures and color, both of which we will have amongst our broad, high end product offering."



Northampton Collection


Shiloh from the Northampton collection by Stark Studio Rugs.

The Northampton Collection is hand knotted in Nepal with wool and aloe, a natural fiber derived from Himalayan nettle. The combination of these quality materials provides a textured and edgy look. Available in 8x10, 9x12, 10x14, 12x15 and custom sizes.


Woodland Collection


Kendell in Greystone from the Woodland collection by Stark Studio Rugs.


Textured and durable, the hand knotted Woodland Collection from Nepal offers a sophisticated, yet organic look with varying unique character from piece to piece. Available in 8x10, 9x12, 10x14, 12x15 and custom sizes.

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